Is your child’s first dentist appointment coming up? No problem! Pediatric dentists and staff are specially trained to help make every visit comfortable and pleasant. However, getting their teeth checked for the first time is a big step, and we understand that kids (and parents) can feel nervous. Here are 5 tips to keep the pesky jitters at bay:
- Come visit. Before your appointment date, feel free to call the dental office to schedule a tour. You and your child can meet the friendly dentists and staff in person, and come the big day, the office environs, from the dentist’s chair to the lobby, will feel more familiar.
- Ask questions. Unanswered questions can lead to needless fear or anxiety. Remember, your staff and doctors are there to help and will be happy to discuss any worries you may have.
- Stay positive. Prior to your child’s appointment, discuss the upcoming procedure in a casual and pleasant manner. It’s best not to use words that may scare him, such as “needle” or “drill.” Reading books, such as Max Goes to the Dentist and Dora the Explorer—Show Me Your Smile, can help your kids get more excited.
- Arrive early. Rushing to your appointment can cause unnecessary stress. Give yourself plenty of time to enjoy the new experience. (TIP: Alameda Pediatric Dentistry provides new patient forms online, so you can fill them out at home and bring them to your first appointment.)
- Bring a toy from home. If your child has a favorite blankie or a small stuffed toy she would like to share the dentist’s chair with, by all means bring it. The goal is for your child to feel comfy and at home.
Still pondering when to schedule your child’s first dental appointment? If he or she is age one year or older, don’t wait! We recommend visiting a pediatric dentist by the time the first baby tooth appears.